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Dolly Parton Says Fan Once Left a Baby on Her Doorstep

Frederick Breedon, Getty Images

A great song is capable of moving the listener on a pretty intimate emotional level, so it’s only natural that fans often try to find ways of showing their appreciation for an artist’s music — even if the artist is successful enough that gifts are clearly unnecessary.

On the other hand, sometimes fans’ tokens of gratitude are just plain bizarre, and when Dolly Parton was asked about the most unusual thing she’d ever been given, she had a real whopper of a story to tell.

“Years ago when I first started being a big star I had fans that were fanatical,” Parton recounted during a recent interview. “It was when ‘Jolene’ was a big hit. We came home one day and there was a baby in a box at our gate with a note in it. The note said, ‘My name is Jolene, my momma has left me here and she wants you to have me.’ Of course, we all freaked out!”

Understandably unnerved, Parton did the right thing and called Human Services, who came and picked up the baby, but the experience has stayed with her. “We never did know or hear anything about it. I knew nothing else. What do you do in a situation like that? There are some loony people in this world! Can you imagine yourself in that situation? It wasn’t like it was a kitten or a puppy dog. It was a baby named Jolene!”

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